Robert Stevenson

Ann Arbor, MI

I began the practice of benefits law with the advent of ERISA, in 1976. My partner Nancy Keppelman and I, and later with the addition of Andrew Stumpff, built Stevenson Keppelman Associates ("SKA"),one of the nation's first employee benefits "boutique" law firms. We had the good fortune of great clients who provided cutting-edge benefits work. After almost 30 years as SKA, we joined Butzel Long. This has further expanded our "bench" of benefits practitioners, and has strengthened our work where benefits matters touch on labor, employment, securities, corporate and related issues.

Executive Compensation
Expert Witness

Have handled noqualified plans for large employers, tax exempts, controlled groups, multinationals and governmentals for decades. Well aware of special issues related to different situations and different kinds of plan sponsors. Significant related experience in M&A matters; recently avoided millions in penalties with agreement modifications.

PBGC Issues
Expert Witness

Have handled PBGC issues for decades. Experience includes merger & acquisition, major bankruptcies, plant closings and creative resolutions of resulting liability under ERISA Section 4062(e), standard terminations, funding waivers, PBGC premium refunds, and other PBGC matters. Plans include those of large employers, tax exempts, controlled groups and multinationals. We have a record of excellent results in PBGC matters, and we enjoy working with PBGC.

Fiduciary/Other Title I Issues
Expert Witness

Have handled fiduciary issues for pension and funded welfare plans, as well as VEBA's. Plans include those of large employers, tax exempts, controlled groups, multinationals and governmentals for decades. Significant related experience in M&A matters. Governmental plan experience primarily in Michigan. Have kept our own clients free of fiduciary problems, and have defended new clients successfully. Litigated landmark fiduciary suits.

Health and Welfare Plans
Expert Witness

Have handled health and other kinds of welfare plans, as well as VEBA's, for a broad range of employers. Plans include those of large employers, tax exempts, controlled groups, multinationals and governmentals for decades. Innovative medical plan designs and use of VEBA's. Significant related experience in M&A matters.

DC Plans
Expert Witness

Have handled DC plans for large employers, tax exempts, controlled groups, multinationals and governmentals for decades. Designs have included QSERP's, floor-offset plans, new comparability designs, the first 401(k) plans, one-time only election plans and others. Significant related experience in M&A matters.

Exempt/Governmental Plans
Expert Witness

Have handled DB, DC, welfare and nonqualified plans for large tax exempts and governmental employers for decades. Tax exempts include large integrated health systems, taxable nonprofit insurers, HMO's and governmental health systems. Significant related experience in M&A matters. Governmental plan experience primarily in Michigan.

DB Plans
Expert Witness

Deep experience with DB plans, for large employers, tax exempts, controlled groups, multinationals and governmentals for decades. Significant related experience in M&A matters. Initiated early cash balance conversions and more recent hybrid plan designs, as well as traditional DB plans. Have obtained funding relief, creative uses of overfunding, QSERP's, PBGC transactions, including major bankruptcies, plant closings and standard terminations.

IRC Issues
Expert Witness

Have handled qualified plan, nonqualified plan, and a broad range of Tax Code issues for decades. Issues include cash-balance disputes,actuarial issues, major FICA refunds, litigation and other high-level negotiations. Plans include those of large employers, tax exempts, controlled groups, multinationals and governmentals for decades. Have corrected errors through EPCRS program, and have negotiated major issues, including in bankruptcy, with IRS. Governmental plan experience primarily in Michigan. Have kept our own clients free of tax problems, and have defended new clients successfully.